For most WordPress pagebuilder plugins, the year 2020 saw modest or no growth, with one major exception.
This plugin passed 5 million installations with no signs of slowing down. It is the platform of choice for an increasing number of WP websites, a “hive mind” endorsement showing again the wisdom of crowds.
To understand why Elementor has blown up, we turned to one of our most versatile and proficient team members, Tilek Djakypov, who has been with Reliable for six years and counting and has seen the web design landscape undergo fundamental and exciting changes.
Tilek will walk us through Elementor and a guiding principle that Reliable lives by: creative adaptation.
Mary: Hey Tilek! Let’s get started. Tell us about where you live.
Tilek: I live in Prague, Czech Republic. It’s great living in a geographic and cultural center like Prague, and I love being able to travel Europe by car. I’ve lived here for over 10 years with my wife and two children.
Mary: How long have you been at Reliable and what was your background before joining the team?
Tilek: I’ve been with Reliable for about six years. Before Reliable, I worked at a small company with two programmers, one designer, and one project manager. I was looking for a new place where I could prove myself. When I was offered the job, I immediately agreed as I liked Reliable’s approach to clients and the technical details of the projects I’d be working on.
Almost six years have passed and I have no regrets. Reliable is my second family, and when new team members come on board, I always tell them, “Welcome to the Reliable family!” Everyone here treats each other in a special way, and I’m delighted to work here.
Mary: What does a typical workday look like for you, and what types of projects do you work on?
Tilek: An ordinary day at Reliable? There is no such thing! Something interesting happens every day. My calendar is booked for the foreseeable future. Mostly, I work with my team on improving our tools. For example, on Thursdays, we test new features. On Fridays, we discuss updating our own WordPress starter theme as well as resolving any small issues the team may have encountered during the week.
After drinking a cup of coffee, I take on the high-priority tasks first. Team members contact me for consults on ongoing projects, I provide training and help my team members grow professionally, and I also help our proposal team in their quoting process for new projects with complex functionality needs.
Usually, I’m given more complicated projects where creative solutions are needed. But I never do them alone. I work closely with my colleagues here at Reliable. This approach solves several problems at once—we can deliver the project faster since we’re tackling it as a team and the other significant benefit is that I can pass on my knowledge to my team members, which helps them further their careers in the tech space.
Mary: What would you say is the most rewarding part of your job?
Tilek: The most pleasant thing about my work is getting good feedback from clients. It’s very satisfying to see that you and your team have put all your efforts into successfully completing a project that makes the client happy in the end. After all, we want Reliable will not only be profitable but also help our clients achieve their goals.
Mary: Tell us about Elementor and why it’s getting more traction lately.
Tilek: Elementor is one of the most popular page builders for WordPress. It’s installed on over five million websites, which is impressive alone. It’s the first open-source page builder and has a drag-and-drop interface so you can easily move elements or sections as needed. Elementor also has live editing so what you see when you’re building out a page is what you’ll get in the end.
Why is it getting more traction lately? It’s simple, really. There is a large community of developers, there is the excellent UI/UX of editing pages, and there is the ability to add custom-coded elements to the Elementor library. All of these features are creating true Elementor fans.
Mary: While Reliable can do it all when it comes to WordPress, Advanced Custom Fields (ACF) has always been our go-to in terms of page builders. What are the benefits of ACF vs. Elementor?
Tilek: ACF provides the ability to deliver a 100% pixel-perfect design-to-website integration. With ACF, we are able to add extra fields to the admin dashboard to control website elements. For example, we can add a global property to show (or hide) the top bar and to control the top bar’s elements. It is a very powerful tool.
But Elementor has a long list of prepared elements so users are able to create new pages with new elements which were not in their original design. This is the biggest advantage of Elementor. The combination of these tools empowers users to make a pixel-perfect webpage while also getting all the functionality they need.
Mary: What differentiates Reliable in our way of implementing Elementor?
Tilek: We actually use a robust combination of ACF and Elementor. We’re always trying to create the most intuitive, user-friendly interface for our clients and not force them to edit code. ACF and Elementor together helps us get the best out of both worlds and give our clients a flexible, easy-to-use dashboard.
Mary: Do you have any tips for clients interested in Elementor?
Tilek: Don’t be afraid to give Elementor a try! You’ll love it. You’ll love the customization options that it provides. Head over to the Elementor website and see what this page builder can do. Make sure to check out their amazing portfolio of templates while you’re there and take a look at the scroll animations, too.
Mary: Last question—what changes in the design/development industry do you anticipate in the next few years? What will we see more of?
Tilek: Stylistically, I think we’ll start to see more gradients, more minimalist designs, more geometric shapes, and a shift towards dark mode/darker color schemes. From a development standpoint, I anticipate an expanded focus on page builder tools, more human-like AI chatbots, and increased awareness and need for accessibility.